Wednesday, July 30, 2008

What a waste...

...of perfectly good legislator effort.

Carbon-monoxide alarms now mandatory in all homes

The goal is to reduce deaths -- there were 92 in Minnesota from 2002 to 2006 -- from the colorless, tasteless, odorless gas.

92 deaths over 5 years. That's an average of 18.4 out of 5 million!

That's an annual fatality rate of 0.000368%. What the hell is the point of legislating something like that?

Dammit! I want my government back!

I'm voting Democrat

I'm voting Democrat because I believe the government will do a better job of spending the money I earn than I would.

I'm voting Democrat because I believe three or four pointy headed elitist liberals need to rewrite the Constitution every few weeks to suit some fringe kooks who would NEVER get their agendas past the voters.

I'm voting Democrat because I believe oil company profits of 4% on a gallon of gas are obscene, but the government taxing the same gallon of gas at 15% isn't.

I'm voting Democrat because I believe that paying $4.00 a gallon or more is no reason to drill for the mountain of oil we are sitting on in THIS country. We wouldn't want to have to move a couple of polar bears or elk, now would we?

I'm voting Democrat because when we pull out of Iraq, I trust that the bad guys will stop what they're doing because they now think we're good people.

I'm voting Democrat because freedom of speech is fine as long as nobody is offended by it.

I'm voting Democrat because I love the fact that I can now marry whomever or whatever I want. I'm going to marry my TV.

I'm voting Democrat because I'm not concerned about the slaughter of millions of babies so long as we keep all death-row inmates alive.

I'm voting Democrat because I don't want to be a able to use my natural rights to protect myself or my family when I'm out running errands or in my own home.

I'm voting Democrat because I believe that churches should only be allowed for political speeches.

I'm voting Democrat because I believe that businesses should not be allowed to make profits for themselves. They need to break even and give the rest away to the employees and the government.

I'm voting Democrat because I believe that I don't want medical doctors who were at the top of their classes to operate on me. I want a government employee who makes $50K a year and couldn't hack it as a contractor or an engineer .

I'm voting Democrat because I believe that people who can't tell us if it will rain on Friday CAN tell us that the polar ice caps will melt away in ten years if I don't start driving a Prius.

I'm voting Democrat because I REALLY believe there is no bias in the media.

Found here.

Rain Barrel

I'm building rain barrels, using these directions.

I found a company in Hopkins-10 minutes from my house-that manufactures juice. They get 55 gallon drums, mix the contents and dispose of the barrels. Their chosen disposal method is selling the drums for $5 a pop. That's a phenomenal price.

Yesterday, my wife picked up 4 barrels for me. I got home and pulled the barrels out of the truck, reading the labels.

The first three were as expected from a plant that makes juice drinks. There were two barrels of prune juice concentrate, and a barrel of strawberry flavor.

The fourth barrel, was...interesting. I'm still laughing about it.

Yes, that is a barrel of flammable, caustic orange flavor, to go in your favorite "orange drink".

Friday, July 25, 2008


I have decided I want some backup glasses, in case the current pair breaks.

When you are shopping for glasses and the pricetags are hovering between $20 and $40, it becomes easy to buy more pairs of glasses than are actually necessary.

I ordered semi-rimless glasses from Zenni for $17.90, shipped.

I ordered rimless glasses from Optical4Less for $42.30, shipped.

I ordered small, metal framed glasses from EyeBuyDirect for $17.21, shipped.

I'll be updating when they arrive, the quality, and a comparison to the Goggles4U glasses I bought a few months ago.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Medeco, in 30 seconds or less

Other lock manufacturers haven't admitted their flaws so readily. Marc Tobias, a lawyer and security expert, recently shook up the lock-picking community by publishing a detailed analysis of how to crack the uncrackable: Medeco locks.

"We've figured out how to break them in as little as 30 seconds," he said. "[Medeco] won't admit it, though. They still believe in security through obscurity.

Supposedly, the holy grail for locks in your home. Too bad.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Long May It Wave

Long May It Wave...

A foreign diplomat who often criticized American policy once observed a United States Marine perform the evening colors ceremony. The diplomat wrote about this simple but solemn ceremony in a letter to his country:

"During one of the past few days, I had occasion to visit the U.S. Embassy in our capital after official working hours. I arrived at a quarter to six and was met by the Marine on guard at the entrance of the Chancery. He asked if I would mind waiting while he lowered the two American flags at the Embassy. What I witnessed over the next 10 minutes so impressed me that I am now led to make this occurrence a part of my ongoing record of this distressing era.

The Marine was dressed in a uniform which was spotless and neat; he walked with a measured tread from the entrance of the Chancery to the stainless steel flagpole before the Embassy and, almost reverently, lowered the flag to the level of his reach where he began to fold it in military fashion.

He then released the flag from the clasps attaching it to the rope, stepped back from the pole, made an about face, and carried the flag between his hands - one above, one below - and placed it securely on a stand before the Chancery. He then marched over to the second flagpole and repeated the same lonesome ceremony. On the way between poles, he mentioned to me very briefly that he would soon be finished.

After completing his task, he apologized for the delay- out of pure courtesy, as nothing less than incapacity would have prevented him from fulfilling his goal - and said to me, 'Thank you for waiting, Sir. I had to pay honor to my country.'

I have had to tell this story because there was something impressive about a lone Marine carrying out a ceremonial task which obviously meant very much to him and which, in its simplicity, made the might, the power and the glory of the United States of America stand forth in a way that a mighty wave of military aircraft, or the passage of a super-carrier, or a parade of 10,000 men could never have made manifest.

In spite of all the many things that I can say negatively about the United States, I do not think there is a soldier, yea, even a private citizen, who could feel as proud about our country today as that Marine does for his country.

One day it is my hope to visit one of our embassies in a far-away place and to see a soldier fold our flag and turn to a stranger and say, 'I am sorry for the delay, Sir. I had to honor my country.'"

Author Unknown

Ethical Dilemna

I'm not at all sure how I would react if I was one of the firemen here.

"We've got to put out the fire!"

"Hold on, son, they're almost done."

About 20 fire departments responded to the blaze.

A good barbecue will do that.

Economic Woes

Starbucks is closing 600 stores due to the economy, but Caribou is building a new store less than 1 block from an existing location, just to get drive-through traffic.

Maybe Starbucks has problems that aren't related to the economy?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


What a horrible violation of the public trust.
A federal grand jury on Monday indicted a longtime Minneapolis police officer on corruption charges after the officer allegedly received $100 on two separate occasions for giving confidential information to an undercover informant who claimed to be a gang member.

So a cop gets approached about an informant, a snitch, or an enemy. He gets asked for confidential information about said informant. He puts "through an inquiry to the National Crime Information Center and obtained nonpublic information from the State Driver Vehicle System regarding a Minnesota license plate number."

He knows this information will be used for revenge. He has to know. But, he doesn't care, because he was offered $100.

Rot in hell, Mike Roberts.

Bush Lied!

Oh, wait.

The last major remnant of Saddam Hussein's nuclear program — a huge stockpile of concentrated natural uranium — reached a Canadian port Saturday to complete a secret U.S. operation that included a two-week airlift from Baghdad and a ship voyage crossing two oceans.

Reason to carry a gun #65890

Father allegedly stomped by group after one tried to grope pre-teen.

Some worthless ghetto thugs were molesting a 12 year old, in public. Her father yelled at them to stop, and they called in reinforcements to stomp him, for the unforgivable crime of disrespecting them by protecting his daughter from their predatory advances.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Sales Drone Complaint

As of last night, I will never do business with Budget Exteriors.

The background:
We took hail damage. We have insurance. We're dealing with the insurance company and collecting written estimates for the work. Most contractors understand what we mean when we say "Give us a written estimate and we'll get back to you."

Budget Exteriors sent out a sales drone named Kevin last night. We were very clear and up-front about wanting a written estimate. His "10 minute" sales pitch took over an hour. When, at the end of it, we were still insistent upon getting a written estimate, he raised his voice, he insulted us, and he stormed out of the house. We called the office to complain.


In my house, we do not make large financial decisions on a whim.
We do NOT hand over control of our projects to other companies.
We do NOT accept boorish behavior from a sales drone.
We do NOT appreciate being lied to.
We do NOT make uninformed decisions based on the sales pitch of a sales drone.
We dealt with you honestly and expected the same in return.


On a side note, did you know that:
a) It's impossible to replace a roof vent without getting a leaky roof? Just ask Kevin.
b) A battered roof vent is enough to get an insurance company to replace an entire roof that's just 6 weeks old? Just ask Kevin.
c) There's is nothing to decide when hiring a company to do a lot of work on your home, because Budget Exteriors is the best, so we need to take his word on that? Just ask Kevin.

Sales drones: The scuzzy, slimy, scum of the earth, created to part fools from their money.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Second Deadly Sin Barbecue of Doom

This weekend, I'm having a barbecue with an extensive menu of dead animal flesh.

Hot dogs
Leg of Lamb

Accompanied by:
Corn on the cob, seasoned and grilled
Homemade potato salad

I can't wait.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Do I need to beat my brother?

My nephew, born Tuesday:

My daughter, now two weeks old, at the same age:

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Could you pass the latest citizenship test?

I qualify to be a citizen.
You answered 100% of questions correctly. Here's your rating:

0-20%: Maybe you're still thinking too much about the Old Country.

25-40%: Mmmm. Do you really want to be a citizen? This kind of performance isn't going to impress those nice immigration folks.

45-60%: Not too bad, but you really need to break out the civics books again -- word is, the INS is looking for an 80 percent score.

65-80%: Hey, you may make a good citizen yet! Look at your wrong answers and a little revision should do the trick.

85-100%: Welcome to the United States! (And, truth be told, you know more about this great land than most Americans.)


Dozens of drivers lined up to fill up free Tuesday at a one-hour gas giveaway sponsored by the makers of a new energy drink in Maplewood.

I understand that gas is expensive, and free gas is nice, but, damn.
Gary Aliperto, of Vandais Heights, watches Kelsey Steadland pumps free gas for him Tuesday. Alipert was the first customer in line, waiting from 8:30 a.m. until noon to get his tank filled for free.

Waiting 3.5 hours to save, at most, $60. My time has value, and I don't consider that to be a winning proposition. If I make $10/hour, the value of my time, including benefits and administrative overhead, is $20/hour. That means he wasted $70, by corporate calculation on a tank of gas that will be gone next week. I consider my time to be worth at least $20. More depending on the situation, but never, ever less.

Man fatally shot after putting toddler on highway, pointing shotgun at her

It's a shame this couldn't have happened sooner, but, at least the only person hurt was the one with difficulty claiming the title.
KENOSHA, Wis. — Walworth County Sheriff's deputies shot and killed a man after he placed his 22-month-old daughter in the highway and pointed a shotgun at her, authorities said Tuesday.

Antonio Torres, 41, was killed Monday after taking off with his daughter against his ex-girlfriend's will. Torres beat the child's mother and threatened to kill the child and himself.

And it wasn't the first time, for this choirboy:
Torres previously served five years in prison after he was charged with battery, kidnapping and false imprisonment for a 1998 incident involving his estranged wife and children, who now reside in Mississippi.

Let me shed a tear for this guy....

Nope. Not gonna happen.